Bronco seniors sign letters of intent for football

Published 3:46 pm Friday, March 17, 2023

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Shawn Battle II and Aquarius Turner of Franklin High School have each signed a letter of intent to play football at the college level. 

A Franklin City Public Schools news release noted that the brief signing ceremony for the seniors took place Feb. 9 in the Peggy H. Wilkins Gymnasium at FHS.


Battle announced his choice of Virginia Union University, a historically Black university, which is located in Richmond. To the cheers of the audience, he highlighted his selection by taking off a coat that revealed a VUU T-shirt, and he also donned a VUU ballcap.

Seated beside him at the ceremony were his parents, Shawn and Vengeria Battle; sister, Trinadee Battle; grandfather, Henry Battle; and aunt, Clara Battle.

Shawn Battle II, who plans to major in cyber security, said he chose VUU because it’s close, affordable, the coaches are hospitable, and the school has “really good football.”

He added, “It’s an all-around good experience when you visit. I will recommend it.”


Turner has chosen to play for North Carolina Wesleyan University in Rocky Mount. To the applause of the audience, he donned a cap with the NCWU logo as the way to announce his choice.

He was accompanied by his mother, Montego Person; brother, DeMariyon Scott; grandmothers, Gloria Person, Helena Person and Latisha Artis; uncle, Shalamar Turner; and other relatives, Tawanna Turner, Jakyia Artis and Kimberly Holeman.

The FHS senior said that one of the reasons he chose NCWU is because of how much the campus impressed him. 

Academically, business management will be Turner’s focus. 

He credits his late father, Antonio Turner, for the decision to not only play football but also advance his education.

“My dad inspired me to go get it and go for what you want,” he said.


Lamont Hill, varsity football head coach at FHS, said of Battle and Turner, “First and foremost, they are both tremendous young men, and they’ve worked for the opportunity that’s in front of them right now. My hope for them is to fulfill their obligations.

“I can’t speak enough on their leadership and work ethic,” he added.

FHS Principal Travis Felts said, “We are very proud of both Shawn and Aquarius and know they will do well academically and athletically next school year at the college level. 

“When Coach Hill was hired as head football coach approximately a year ago, one of his goals was to get as many of our student-athletes as possible the opportunity to go to college and play football at the next level,” Felts continued. “He held true to his word by working relentlessly at making contact with college coaches, sending film to coaches and taking students to camps on college campuses, both in state and out of state. We have more good news coming soon from our student-athletes.”